As the world bask in the euphoria of the newly discovered malaria vaccine by German researchers, a top Nigeria Entomologist and Coordinator, Malaria Research Programme, Nigerian Institute of Medical Research, (NIMR), Dr. Samuel Awolola, has cautioned Nigerians not to be carried away by the result of the clinical trials, insisting that there is no effective malaria vaccine yet.
It would be recalled that last weekend, researchers at the University of Tübingen in collaboration with the biotech company, Sanaria Incorporated announced that they have discovered an effective vaccine that offers up to 100 per cent protection from malaria.
But the Nigerian malaria Researcher disagreed with the claim, saying it is not time to conclude that the vaccine is effective as many of such have been announced in the past.
“It is all the same story. After sometime, you will hear what will happen. We do not have effective malaria and registered malaria vaccine at the moment. What they give in the USA that people think is vaccine is prophylaxis that will protect people when they come to malaria endemic countries. That will only prevent malaria for a while.
“There are several malaria trials going on across the globe. We do not have any malaria vaccine recognised by the World Health Organisation (WHO).
“There are some that are giving promising results and this is one of them. These vaccine trials most times give 100 per cent result at first, but after some time they will come down.
“Based on our experience in the field, these multi billion naira companies from the United Kingdom (UK), will come and say they have a vaccine; just give it three months, it will come down to 70 per cent. In another six months, it will come down to 30 per cent. It is still far from uhuru,” Awolola stated.